Hornedo Middle School teacher on furlough after controversial comments
EL PASO, Texas — EPID has placed a teacher on administrative leave after she was heard making controversial comments in cellphone videos recorded by students.
The videos recorded a conversation held in her classroom on topics including illegal immigration and Black Lives Matter. In an 8-minute recording obtained by ABC-7, the teacher can be heard advocating for those who come to the United States for better opportunities, and says her parents are undocumented.
A student in the recordings can be heard accused of calling illegal immigrants ‘rapists and criminals’ by another student. This was eventually followed in the video by the teacher saying “[that]It’s like saying all white kids are school shooters.”
ABC-7 spoke with a parent of one of the students who filmed the interaction, who said he had a “tummy ache.” He claims the teacher also introduced his Hispanic daughter as white in the discussion.
“My daughter was profiled as white simply because of her fair skin and Caucasian last name, but she is, in fact, Hispanic,” parent James Schwitter said. He added ‘watching a child being told by an administrator and someone that she believes she is racist because the teacher says all white people are’ is ‘very disgusting’.
ABC-7 showed this video to other parents to see if they thought the discussion was appropriate for an 8th grade classroom.
“No, it’s not appropriate,” said Alejandra Lopez, who has a son who attends Hornedo Middle School.
Tracy Evans, who teaches two boys in middle school, added that “facts should be taught in the classroom. Not personal opinions.”
Another parent who wanted to stay off camera told us that while she thinks what the teacher said may have been wrong, she thinks the kids at Hornedo Middle School are “out of control” and wouldn’t have never had to film in the first place. Students are not allowed to have their phones on them.
We reached out to the El Paso Teachers Association, the union the teacher is a member of, for comment. President Norma De La Rosa said “neither she nor I will have any additional comments while our union reviews the incident.”
ABC-7 chooses not to name the teacher while the PISD investigates this matter.